Once called "Ms. Perseverance" by USA Today, well-rounded veteran broadcast journalist Margaret Jane Pauley (1950-) was born on this day in Bloomington, Indiana and graduated from Indiana University with a political science degree.
She once admitted that she was raised with "the pragmatic sense to mistrust the good stuff and be always prepared for misfortune that might be around the corner."
Known for her probing and compassionate interviews, Pauley began her 13-year stint as co-anchor of NBC's Today Show in 1976, first with Tom Brokaw, then Bryant Gumble.
"We're close friends and will be forever," Pauley said of her relationship with Gumble. "He's got a make-no-apologies personality. It's part of his charm."
Honored with multiple Emmy Awards, Pauley substituted for Brokaw as anchor of the evening news and co-hosted the award-winning newsmagazine Dateline NBC. She retired early in 2003, saying that she needed to "find more meaning."
With upbeat grace, Pauley said, "There might be false starts and do-overs. You are entitled to experiment before you find your calling."
Married to Doonesbury cartoonist Garry Trudeau, the intensely private Pauley revealed candidly in her 2004 autobiography, Skywriting: A Life Out of the Blue, that she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder at age 50.
"I grew into middle age and recognized a confidence and strength that were unfamiliar to me, and I like them," said Pauley, who won the 2007 Cronkite Award for excellence in Journalism. In 2009, The Jane Pauley Community Health Center opened in her home town to provide health services for uninsured and underinsured people.
A well-rounded life is a strong foundation.